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PROJECT DOCUMENTATION : The Diet Chart for Firms

Project Documentation is consolidation of the process through which an architect’s vision is realized in brick and mortar. Records, be it architectural or otherwise, helps us understand a plethora of aspects around any project. For instance, from an architects’ perspective a design is conceptualized by the drawings, but it is the documentation that tells us the story behind the inspiration: “what did it trigger?”, “What does it represent for the designer?”

It is incredibly important to include the extended architectural community to be involved in the process. For a young designer, who is looking at a project or has some concepts in their conscious which they are struggling with, taking a look at documentations of other projects helps them to get answers to what they are looking for. Cultivating a deeper understanding of architectural concepts and the macro factors involved in a real life scenario, by developing an understanding of the challenges, solutions and processes can go a long way. By treating the Project Documentations as case studies in the academics these budding architects can develop crucial understanding for their future and for the firms where they will be joining in.

The following points stipulate the importance of documenting details of a project through the divergent means of photography, vlogging and blogging, article writing and sketching:

Estimations and insights
As a corporate house, knowing the budget goes a long way in determining the quotations that one gives to the clients. Previous documentations give a fair idea about material costs, labor costs, completion time, etc. But more importantly, it tells one about the constraints that they have to work with on site. Previous documentations of projects in that area will inform about the quality of land, material best suited for that project.

Establishing a Social presence
A well-documented chain of projects provide transparency and trust amongst clients, stakeholders and investors. Having a documented portfolio of projects saves time by sending the right message to everyone. In the digital age being recognized and appreciated for what one does best creates an inherent brand power which is a leverage for negotiations. Setting out the area of expertise also gets the right clients for the firm.

Improving operational efficiency
A study of previous projects over a period of time helps an organization to identify the points of inefficiency it could be the material acquisition downtime, blank operational time slots, a certain equipment’s frequent malfunctioning, etc. By analysis of previous projects, a high level of process optimization can be reached which increases the effectiveness of the resources and maximizes the profits.

Validation as a Legal Document
A well-documented record of organizational processes can be used in the court of law as an evidence. Through it we know “how” and “what” had happened with the project. The resources used, time given to safety measures, material usage, approvals and every other relevant thing. These determining factors are used as an evidence for defense as well to incarcerate any malpractice against the architect or their conceived design.

Project Documentation is more than a compulsion; it’s like a self-improvement diet chart for Architectural Firms, helping them strive for excellence and synergy with the environment they are operating in.